As legislators in Texas consider expanding financial incentives for game developers and other producers of entertainment media, ESA boss Michael Gallagher weighs in with an op-ed in the Austin American-Statesman:
With over 90 development companies in Texas, the video game industry accounted for more than one-third of the moving media industry’s $345 million investment in the state in 2007. In addition to the more than 7,500 jobs that the industry currently supports in Texas, the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts found in a recent report that video games "have a ripple-effect and spread technological innovations to other industries…"
The opportunity now falls on the Texas state legislature, however, to pass the bills that will keep the industry’s momentum in the Lone Star State going. Texas currently risks falling behind several states in economic incentive programs for the entertainment industry. This year alone, thirteen states are actively considering legislation that will either create or significantly expand their existing incentive program for digital interactive media development and production…
While economic incentives for the video game industry are a sound investment for Texas’ cultural legacy, they are an even better investment for the people of Texas.